I am using grunt tool for magento server-side less preprocessing.

I have created _extend.less file following directory structure for my custom less compilation

app\design\frontend\Vendorname\themename\web\css\source\ _extend.less

After all necessary configurations of grunt I managed to compile my own less files with the grunt command

grunt less:themename

Now everything works perfectly except when I am trying to add new .less file into _extend.less through @import directive grunt doesn't publish it's symlinks to


For example after I import _custom_button.less in _extend.less with

@import '_custom_button.less';

Now everytime I add new files with @import I have to run the commands.

grunt clean:themename
grunt exec:themename

So this workflow is conflicting when working with developers as it cleans everything in pub\static\frontend\Magento\themename\en_US directory.So that is the problem.I don't want to run clean command again.

Can I do anything for that?

  • No need to use clean and exec command every-time, have you tried grunt watch? – Ruhani Jun 6 '18 at 10:58
  • Grunt watch is working actually.The problem is that in default styles-l.less file we import _extend.less later through //@magento_import directive and that's why _module.less can not get our own _extend.less file variable because it gets _module.less file from each and every module. – Shashank Bhatt Jun 6 '18 at 11:13
  • See blank theme styles-l.less file in which you will find //@magento_import 'source/_extend.less'; at last. – Shashank Bhatt Jun 6 '18 at 11:14

Try to below code for add your own less file:

You can create new less file for your theme


Override below file in your theme


Import your less file in source.less


Like this @import '_custom_button.less';

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  • Hello hweb87, thanks for your answer but this is not what I am looking for.Actually problem is that every time I import new less fie in web directory, I had to relaunch grunt clean and grunt exec command otherwise all idea of combining all files in pub folder (which is recommanded way) with grunt will not work. – Shashank Bhatt Jun 14 '18 at 5:26
  • @ShashankBhatt for above solution you no need to run every time grunt clean and grunt exec command. just run grunt watch. please try once above way. – hweb87 Jun 14 '18 at 5:29
  • After confirming with deveopers I came to know that even I can rerun grunt clean command and they don't mind with it as they no longer have to do anything in pub/static folder until I have not put my files in app directory. So after static content deploy I can regain all files. – Shashank Bhatt Jun 14 '18 at 5:29
  • As per your solution, it doesn't work because symlink of newly added file to app/design will not published to pub/static/frontend/magento/theme/web/cdd/source/ path automatically. Grunt will always look for file in this directory and not in app directory.To publish symlink we must run exec command. – Shashank Bhatt Jun 27 '18 at 7:25

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